Shamima Begum’s Faces More Hurdles to Return to UK From Syria

In the latest development of her ongoing legal battle, Shamima Begum’s initial bid to challenge the removal of her British citizenship at the Supreme Court has been rejected. Here’s the full story.

Islamic State

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Shamima Begum, the 24-year-old who, when aged 15, travelled to Syria to join Islamic State, has sought to challenge the subsequent removal of her British citizenship. 

Another Setback

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However, her latest attempt to overturn the Home Office’s decision to remove her citizenship, effectively rendering her stateless, faced another setback after the Supreme Court turned down her initial bid. 

Illegal Under International Law

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Though being made stateless is illegal under international law, the British government contends that, due to her Bangladeshi heritage, Begum could turn to Bangladesh for citizenship despite the Bangladeshi authorities’ refusal to allow her entry. 

Losing Side

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Begum had sought permission from the Court of Appeal to escalate her case but found herself on the losing side once again. 

No Easy Road

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The road Begum has travelled has by no means been an easy one. In 2019, the British government revoked Begum’s citizenship on grounds of national security after she left London to travel to Syria to join the Islamic State.

Not Alone

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Begum was not alone when she left, travelling with two other young girls from East London, Kadiza Sultana and Amira Abase. 

Tragic Consequences

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Lured by promises of establishing a new Islamic Caliphate, the trio embarked on a journey that would have tragic consequences for them all.

Significant Hardships

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Begum’s journey from London schoolgirl to ISIS bride garnered international attention. Spending over three years under ISIS rule, she endured significant hardships, including the loss of her three children. 

Uncertain Fate

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Of her companions, Sultana is believed dead, and Abase’s fate remains uncertain.

Legal Limbo

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Begum, the only presumed survivor, was found in a Syrian refugee camp following Islamic State’s defeat. However, Begum remains in legal limbo, grappling with the consequences of her past decisions.

Unanimous Dismissal

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Earlier this year, the Court of Appeal delivered a unanimous dismissal of Begum’s plea to regain her citizenship. 

“Author of Her Own Misfortune”

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In her ruling, Lady Justice Baroness Carr stated, “It could be argued the decision in Ms Begum’s case was harsh. It could also be argued that Ms Begum is the author of her own misfortune.”

“The Appeal is Dismissed”

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She continued, “But it is not for this court to agree or disagree with either point of view. Our only task is to assess whether the deprivation decision was unlawful. We have concluded it was not, and the appeal is dismissed.”

Victim of Trafficking

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Begum’s legal team contend that the Home Office’s decision to strip her citizenship was unlawful, citing a failure to consider her status as a potential victim of trafficking adequately. 

Dire Conditions

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Her lawyers also stressed the dire conditions in the Syrian refugee camp where she resides, highlighting concerns of arbitrary detention and inhumane treatment.

Arbitrarily Detained

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Her lawyers stated, “The fact of the matter is this – that Shamima, as with other British women and children, is arbitrarily detained in a prison camp in northeast Syria.”

“Not a Refugee Camp”

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They continued, “It is not a refugee camp – those detained are unable to leave, and the conditions have, with ever greater urgency, been categorised by every international body as well as by the UK courts in Shamima’s case itself, as constituting torture and inhuman treatment.”

Initial Bid Denied

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With the Supreme Court denying her initial bid, Begum’s legal team faces the prospect of seeking direct permission to present her case to the Supreme Court.

Worldwide Scrutiny

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The implications of her legal battle extend beyond the UK’s borders, drawing scrutiny from human rights advocates and legal experts worldwide. 


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For her part, Begum has said that she is “ashamed” of her past actions and will continue to struggle for the right to return home. 

Human Cost

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As the case navigates through the British legal system, her case serves as a stark reminder of the human cost extremist groups like the Islamic State can have on ordinary people. 

Dire Consequences

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Begum’s journey, from a young girl lured by promises of a utopian Caliphate to a woman grappling with the dire consequences of her choices, serves as a stark reminder of the vulnerabilities of youth and the manipulative power of terrorist groups like Islamic State.

Far-Reaching Implications

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With some arguing that Begum joined a terrorist organisation willingly and others stressing that, as she was only 15 at the time, she can’t have truly understood her decision and was effectively trafficked, the outcome of her case will have far-reaching implications, both for Begum and for the UK’s standing internationally. 

The case continues.

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The post Shamima Begum’s Faces More Hurdles to Return to UK From Syria first appeared on Edge Media.

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Grant Gallacher is a seasoned writer with expertise in politics and impactful daily news. His work, deeply rooted in addressing issues that resonate with a wide audience, showcases an unwavering commitment to bringing forth the stories that matter. He is also known for satirical writing and stand up comedy.

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